Today we're going to be reviewing one of the most popular keyword tools in the market: KWFinder.
But not just that. I've included a full step-by-step tutorial explaining how to get the most out of this tool, so that you can squeeze every single $ invested on your keyword research tool!
Let's jump right into it.
Part 1: Overview
Find long tail keywords with low SEO difficulty
KWFinder is an easy-to-use keyword research tool bringing perfect keyword ideas.
A clear and appealing value proposition. Easy to use, keyword ideas, low competition long tail keywords galore.
Let's see if they deliver, but first:
Pricing and Plans
KWFinder currently has 3 plans and those are volume-based. Meaning each one has a limit in the amount of keyword lookups or checks you can perform each 24 hours.
Here are the monthly prices at the time of writing:
The more economic plan they offer comes at $29 per month and allows you to do 100keyword lookups per day, which is enough when you're just starting and looking for one good niche. Then once you've got some traction and you want to scale you'll probably need to move onto the Premium plan which comes at $49.
Prices have experienced a few increases over the last couple of years.
Let's have a look now at their yearly plans:
Pricing becomes so much better if you opt for a yearly plan, with the Premium costing less per month than the Basic on monthly (and you get 5 times as much). I won't even look at the agency plan because well, I doubt you need to research 36,000 keywords per month (those are manual checks, you get a ton of free suggestions on each search so...)
Speaking about suggestions, lets jump into the actual tool and see how it works, the interface, the kind of results that we get and all of its features. All of them.
What KWFinder does and does not
Does: Allow search based on country or language. Not a bad feature.
Does: Give you a s**tton of data around the keyword to work with. So much I'm going to break the following screen into a few sections so that you know what's going on here.
Let's have a look at the left hand side first:
We've got three tabs on top: Suggestions, autocomplete and questions
We'll focus on suggestions first and on the tutorial further below I'll cover the uses of the other two.
We get the search volume for the keyword we've looked "best led tv", its CPC (for adsense) and the PPC competition level in a scale from 0 to 100 being 100 the highest.
Then we're given a "Keyword Difficulty" score.
Like any other tool, that's a numerical result the software spits by combining a series of factors such as DA, PA, TF and other third party metrics and it's innacurate. They all are. But we'll dig into that a bit later.
The suggestions tab is where KWFinder will show a lot of related keywords around the original one you just looked up. After some filters are applied using the "results filter" button on the top left, we'll get some REALLY useful data here. I'll teach you how on Part 2: Using the tool like a pro.
Let's look at the right hand side now:
Again we got that KC score big and bold. We'll explain later what each range means according to KWFinder and what the actual results typically are.
We have then a nice trends graph. This will help you spot seasonality, decreasing popularity or a booming market.
Now, it's important that you know that the monthly search volume KWFinder says, is the average of the last 12 months. If a keyword is in full decline (or explosion) and you only look at the average monthly searches you could fall into a trap (or miss a great opportunity) so do look at the trends.
The best part of this tool.
Its Google's SERP results.
It shows you MOZ's Domain Authority, Page Authority, Mozrank, Moztrust nº of external juice-passing links and then a few social shares counts. Then it spits a SEO competitiveness score for each result.
To get a clearer look at what the top 10 looks like, we're going to click on "Analyze SERP" on the bottom and we'll see something like this:
Which gives you a very clean an organized birds eyeview of page 1 results including all the metrics mentionend above.
Now, it's important that you know that KWFinder will treat the featured snippet also know as result 0, the magic spot, the mystery spot, that big badass result that steals all the clicks and the unfair spot as result nº1, so more often than not you'll see the same result twice, once on position 1 and once somewhere else.
In this case, the featured snippet is taken by organic result nº8! and that has an impact on the KC score so watch out...
KWFinder's main flaw
The main problem with this tool is how heavily it relies on MOZ's data, which is known for its inaccuracy.
The thing is, MOZ's spiders only crawl a portion of a site's total links, so their metrics aren't good enough.
Sure thing, it's better than nothing and the KC score you'll see on KWFinder can serve as an initial indicator of a keyword's real competition, but you should still learn how to judge that by yourself manually. (Don't worry we'll have another article covering that very soon!)
Part 2: Using the tool like a pro
So by now you pretty much know what to expect from the tool. Keyword suggestions in a few different formats, search trends, an overview of the top 10 results with and an SEO competition score that you can use as an early indicator. Nice.
But certain details on how you use the tool will help you get more from it than your competitors, so let's have a look at a few things.
Filtering your results for the keywords that matter.
Remember that "Results filter" button I mentioned earlier? Let's hit it and see what comes up:
To fully optimize the suggestions we get from KWFinder, we're going to use a few filters here.
For the average amazon affiliate site, the backbone of your content are "best xyz" kind of posts. Then, if you're just starting out, we may aswell ignore anything over 35. That's usually competitive enough to be out of reach for a young site.
If you're trying to maximize your earnings by going for higher volume keywords, you can set a specific minimum search volume under which you don't care about the keyword. For the sake of this example, I'll set 200 as a minimum.
You can also add negative (excluding) keywords. Suppose you're into the toys market but are now looking for games made for grown ups. You could exclude the word "kids" and its variations.
"Board games? yes
please KWFinder, but just the best, and not for kids"
And KWFinder will provide.
Here's an example of how this would look like:
As you see, I've also set a minimum of 3 words. Two-word keywords, even if they're "best xyz" are typically VERY competitive and VERY broad (meaning, awful conversion rates) Hardly ever worth trying.
We click on search and we get the following suggestions:
PROTIP: Set your filters while inactive (switch on gray) save, then turn them on (switch on green). Otherwise the tool glitches and only some filters apply.
As you see, now we're getting better suggestions than before. The best part is, we already know the search volume and competition score, so we won't need to waste a manual check (remember we're limited to 100/500 lookups per day) for any of those keywords.
And, we've just got a great suggestion there. Best 32 inch TV. This awesome keyword was before buried on some irrelevant keywords like "oled tv" "samsung tv" and the like.
PROTIP: Sizes are great long tail variations in many many markets. If a product is available on various sizes, check all the possible variations of "best _size_ product" or even better, just filter and KWFinder will honor its name and find them for you
Getting long tail variations and questions from our seed keyword
Remember those two other tabs by "suggestions" that we ignored at the beginning?
The tab "Autocomplete" will give you long tail variations of the seed keyword, but only longer versions of the original. Here's an example:
What I mean by " only longer versions of the original keyword" is that it won't give you keywords like "best 32 inch led tv under 100" but it will give you "best led tv under 100". Hope that isn't confusing.
And what about filtering, can we filter these too? You bet you can.
If i flick the filter switch back on it would show only the kws that meet my cryteria.
What about the "Questions" tab then?
Cool, more keywords, but sadly these are typically the weakest ones. I don't think I've ever come across any solid keyword using this tab.
Answerthepublic is far better on this regard and it's a free tool so if you're dissapointed with this functionality of KWFinder, you already know its substitute
You've probably noticed the two blue buttons on the bottom of the keyword suggestions box. The one at the right is pretty self explainatory. Select which keywords you want to export by ticking the grey boxes on the left and click on Export.
PROTIP: Select "Export with metrics" or you'll only get the list of keywords
But you can also create personalized lists of keywords inside KWFinder if you're too lazy to be constantly exporting stuff or doing manual copy-paste combos inside a google sheets doc (which, however, it's what I'd recommend you to do as you can organize them in any fashion of your liking AND you won't lose the keywords if you cancel the account)
However, if you do want to use this functionality, it's quite simple:
Select keywords, click add to list, create a new list if it's the first time and you're set. Nice and simple.
Being smarter than the tool
So, have I mentioned already the one thing I don't like about the tool? Oh yeah, accuracy issues.
But it's a caveat you can somewhat fix by being smarter than the tool and spotting weird results. Here's one, let's see if you find the cat amongst the bears:
Have you spotted it?
Well, it's three "weird" results actually. All three with KC scores on the 20s range.
And why is that? Moz PA is read here as 1. A damn one. But look at the sites, I mean, I doubt ign.com isn't funneling any link juice from the whole site to that page...
Let's do what any keyword meister would do and manually check that:
Huh? Well, yeah, this is a typical KWFinder problem. It will get the DA or the PA of a given site wrong and slap a 1 in that cell, bringin the whole KC score down with it. Not very frequent though.
What this means is that you can't just trust the KC score. Here's what you should really do:
Stabish base cryteria. Type of keyword (best? vs? how to? up to you), then conduct some searches and look for promising results. Then you want to manually check the top 10 results both on the SERPChecker tool and then simply by clicking on the URLs of the results (open in a new tab for speed) you want to check page by page that the data is correct, and manually vet the quality of the actual content, on-page SEO of the competitor etc.
All in all, KWFinder has all the functions you need to find a good niche or new keywords for your site and comes at a very affordable price (specially if you go for the yearly plan!).
It is extremely easy and intuitive to use, has a friendly user interface and is still accurate enough to point you in the right direction (given that you'll know how to spot traps following the above point).
It doesn't match the level of functionalities and options of SEMrush, and it's far from being the SEO swiss-knive Ahrefs is, but then it only costs a tiny fraction of the price of those two tools, and its waaaaaay easier to use.
It would be my recommendation for any beginner who's never used a keyword tool before and just wants to get going with some minimal investment in tools.